Catholics and other Christians including Lutherans, Methodists, and Presbyterians are heading to church today for ashes to mark the beginning of the Lenten season.
Again this year, drive-through ashes are being offered at the Munholland United Methodist Church at 1201 Metairie Road. The service will be available from 7 a.m. until 1 p.m. today.
Lent is a time of repentance, fasting and prayer leading into Easter, which this year falls on April 16.
Archbishop Gregory Aymond notes that Catholics are asked to fast and abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday and on Good Friday.
"That means for persons between the ages of 18 and 59, taking only one full meal. Two smaller meals that together are not equal to a full meal are allowed. We’re also asked to abstain from meat on all the Fridays of Lent. Let’s face it, that’s not much of a sacrifice for us in south Louisiana," the Archbishop says.